Gauteng to debate motion calling for MECs to resign over deadly fire at Bank of Lisbon


JOHANNESBURG, October 20 – The Gauteng Legislature will on Tuesday debate a motion tabled by the Democratic Alliance (DA) calling for resignations of MECs who allegedly failed to prevent the tragic Bank of Lisbon fire, in which three firefighters lost their lives – one of them fell more than 20 floors to his death.

Last month witnesses gathered on the pavement opposite the burning building watched in horror as the fireman fell to his death.

On Tuesday the DA motion will call or Infrastructure Development MEC Jacob Mamabolo and Health MEC Gwen Ramokgopa to resign. The party accused them of failing to heed multiple warnings the building was such a health hazard staff should have long been moved elsewhere.

The building houses the provincial departments of health, human settlements and cooperative governance and traditional affairs.

Commenting ahead of the motion, Jack Bloom, DA provincial spokesperson on health, said there was a need for accountability – not only for the deadly fire but also for all unsafe provincial buildings.

Gauteng MEC of Infrastructure Development, Jacob Mamabolo, admitted after the fire which burned for days had been doused, that the building had a safety rating of only 21 per cent.

Buildings are required by law to have a minimum of an 85 per cent safety rating.

Investigations into the cause of the fire continue and workers have been relocated to temporary offices while a permanent solution is being sought.

– African News Agency (ANA)